Blackford Centre for Nutrition
Accredited Diploma in Nutrition Course
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need any experience to enrol on the nutritionist course?
You don't need any experience.
How long are the modules?
The length of the modules varies from 15 to 30 pages.
What sort of questions are asked in the assignments?
The assignments involve a range of case studies and research assignments.
Is the course accredited or endorsed?
Our course has been endorsed under the ABC Awards' Quality Licence Scheme. This means that we have undergone an external quality check to ensure that our organisation and the courses it offers, meet certain quality criteria. ABC Awards' endorsement involves a robust and rigorous quality audit by external inspectors to ensure quality is consistently met. A regular review of courses is carried out as part of the endorsement process. To this end the learning outcomes of the course have been benchmarked at Level 4 Award against level descriptors published by Ofqual, to indicate the depth of study and level of difficulty involved in successful completion by the learner.
ABC Awards is a leading national Awarding Organisation, regulated by Ofqual and the Welsh Government. They have a comprehensive portfolio of over 650 Ofqual regulated qualifications on the national Qualifications and Credit framework (QCF). It has a long-established reputation for developing and awarding high quality vocational qualifications across a wide range of industries.
At the end of this course successful learners will receive a Certificate of Achievement by ABC Awards and a Learner Unit Summary (which lists the details of all the units you have completed as part of your course).
Read more about our course accreditation
How long does it usually take to complete the course?
The course can take five months to complete. But you can do it as quickly or slowly as you want.
Can I call myself a Nutritionist?
Yes, you can call yourself a Nutritionist. As the official NHS website states: "As well as full and part-time courses, it is possible to study via distance learning or to do a short course." - www.nhscareers.nhs.uk/details/Default.aspx?Id=840
What can I call myself in South Africa?
Under South African legislation, you may not use the following titles: Nutritionist, Student Nutritionist, Supplementary Nutritionist, Dietitian, or Supplementary Dietitian, unless you are registered with the Health Professions Council: www.hpcsa.co.za/board_psychology_registration.php. We therefore recommend you style yourself a 'Nutritional Advisor' or a 'Nutritional Therapist'. You are legally allowed to practise, using these two titles.
Can I call myself a Dietitian?
No. As the official NHS careers website says: "It is necessary to have a recognised degree, MSc or post graduate diploma in nutrition and dietetics to work as a dietitian." - www.nhscareers.nhs.uk/details/Default.aspx?Id=840
The British Nutrition Foundation says: "The title 'dietitian' is protected by the Health Professionals Council (HPC), meaning that dietitians must be fully qualified and registered with the HPC in order to use the title dietitian" - www.nutrition.org.uk
Can I practice in the USA?
It depends on the state. As the official US government Department of Labor website says: "Licensure, certification, or registration requirements vary by State" - www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Dietitians-and-nutritionists.htm#tab-4
Can I practise in Australia?
Yes. As the official Australian dietricians' website says: "There are no rules governing the use of the terms 'dietitian' and 'nutritionist'." daa.asn.au/for-the-public/smart-eating-for-you/frequently-asked-questions/dietitian-or-nutritionist/
Can I practise in Canada?
Broadly, yes. In some Canadian provinces the term nutritionist can be used by anyone with or without any formal education or training. The term "Registered Nutritionist", however, is protected by law in Alberta, British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Quebec and the term "Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist" is protected by law in News Brunswick. In these cases, the educational requirements are the same for both dietitian and nutritionist. If in doubt, you should use the term 'Nutritional Advisor' or 'Nutrition Consultant'.
Professional bodies for learners in South Africa
In South Africa there are some organisations that you may come across. These include:
SAANT (South African Association for Nutritional Therapy) is a self-appointed body and has no regulatory authority.
However, a nutritionist learner may want to join as an Associate Member.
AHPCSA (The Allied Health Professions Council of South Africa) is a statutory health body, however there is no government control over nutritionists in South Africa.
The AHPCSA legislation governs all medical and mental professionals. The legislation is primarily intended to regulate doctors and dentists, but to be absolutely safe, it would be wise to give clients a document pointing out that you are not going to treat any medical or mental conditions.
What associations can I join?
Our learners can join the Complementary Medical Association (CMA). Practitioner membership costs £150 a year. To get to the CMA website, click on this link - www.the-cma.org.uk.
When you have completed your course, you will be able to register with any of these professional organisations.
- Federation of Holistic Therapists
- Naturopathic Nutrition Association
- nternational Institute for Complementary Therapists (IICT)
- Complimentary Therapists Association
Our learners can’t join The National Therapy Council; you can only join them if you have studied one of the courses that they have accredited.
Our learners can’t join BANT, British Association for applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy. You can only register with them if you have studied a course accredited by the Nutritional Therapy Council. But BANT has no official status.
Is the course accredited on the NTC Register?
The Register is purely voluntary.
You can practise with or without registration on the Register.
We haven't applied to have our course accredited because we already have accreditation with ABC Awards, and because the register is mainly aimed at university courses, but it's something we'll continue to review.
How can I be sure that you're legitimate, and that you won't disappear with my money?
Here are some answers we hope will reassure you.
We've been in operation since 1995; so we're very established.
We publish our physical address at the bottom of each page - and you are welcome to visit us.
We're inspected annually by our accreditation body (you can phone them to verify that).
You can read the Reviews of our students on the web site.
You can ask us for the contact details of former students who will talk to you about their experiences.
We publish an Ethical statement here.
We're registered at Companies House: registration number 352 4886
Our VAT number is 729 1528 23
- Our Licence number granted by the Office of Fair Trading under the Consumer Credit Act 1974 is 606843.
Our bank is NatWest, 7 High Street, Wells, Somerset (we have money in the bank and no loans or overdraft).
We're registered with the UK government's Register of Learning Providers (www.ukrlp.co.uk); Number 10009490.
And finally, we love what we do; and we wouldn't do anything to jeopardise it.
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